(UPDATE) Cuomo OKs displaced New Yorkers voting at any polling place

The Board of Elections in NYC uses public schools and gyms as polling stations.

UPDATE:

Governor Cuomo announced on Monday evening that he had signed an executive order allowing New Yorkers displaced by Hurricane Sandy to vote by affidavit from any polling station if they are unable to make it to the one where they are registered.

“We want everyone to vote and we want to make it as easy as possible,” Cuomo said.

This applies to all registered voters in Rockland County, Westchester, Long Island and New York City.

The governor acknowledged that under this system, down-ballot voting —
everything other than the presidential and Senate elections, including all local races — will not be available
for those who have been relocated far from home.

Metro’s original story is below.

According to estimates from the Board of Elections, some 143,000 voters in NYC probably need to double check their polling location before going out to vote on Tuesday.

With some public schools still closed from the storm, polling stations are being relocated and consolidated around the city.

The Board of Elections has provided a document online that outlines the relocations by borough, and have updated their online search tool to reflect the new locations.

Voters can also text “NYCVOTES” to 877-877. Spanish-speaking voters can text DONDE.

Mayor Bloomberg estimated “a total of something like 61″ polling sites have been relocated: 28 in Queens, 24 in Brooklyn, three in Manhattan, three in the Bronx, two in Staten Island.

Bloomberg also said that NYC Service volunteers are letting voters know about their new polling sites.

All poll sites should be be open from 6am to 9pm.

The mayor was critical of the Board of Elections, asserting that there is need for an increase in accountability and efficiency and citing “a history of not opening all poll sites on time.”

“The fact that the Board has been unable to agree on selecting a new executive director for two years shows just how dysfunctional it is,” Bloomberg said. “The difficulties they’ve had in planning for Tuesday I think further underscores that.”

Displaced voters

Some officials have also expressed concerns about voters who have been displaced by the storm and may not be able to return to the neighborhood in which they’re registered by Tuesday.

Park Slope councilman Brad Lander, whose district includes the shelters at the Park Slope Armory and John Jay High School, is urging his constituents to make calls or sign an online petition to lobby Governor Andrew Cuomo to allow displaced voters to vote by affidavit.


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